Merry Es­sex-mas!

I joined the cast in the TOWIE Xmas spe­cial!

Chat - - Chat come on in! - By Emma John­son, 34, from Lon­don

Who doesn’t want their 15 min­utes of fame? That one chance to daz­zle in the spot­light, with all eyes on you? Well, I cer­tainly do. And it’s a dream I’ve been chas­ing since I was 19.

I’ve al­ways longed to be on the telly.

So, 13 years ago, in 2004, I de­cided to try and make my dreams a re­al­ity.

To gain some ex­pe­ri­ence, I ap­plied to be an ex­tra in a TV ad.

It was for Ox­fam, and I’d seen an ad­vert on an au­di­tion web­site.

Why not? I’d thought, putting my­self for­ward.

In the ad­vert, I had to walk around mar­kets and pre­tend to be shop­ping.

‘That’s me!’ I screamed at the telly to my mates when it aired.

I got a real buzz from see­ing my­self on screen, and was hun­gry for more.

My next job came in 2006 when the film Bo­rat, star­ring Sacha Baron Co­hen, was re­leased.

Pro­mot­ing the movie, I worked the red car­pet dressed as a ‘lady of the night’ from Bo­rat’s home coun­try of Kaza­khstan! Red leather jacket, tacky belt, sil­ver san­dals – I looked the part as I posed with Sacha, the cam­eras flash­ing.

Ner­vous, I even had to sing the Kaza­khstan na­tional an­them. You can do this, I told my­self. And I pulled it off! The next day, my face was all over news­pa­pers and mag­a­zines.

I loved the at­ten­tion! And it seemed to open doors to so many other op­por­tu­ni­ties – TV shows, ads, pro­mo­tions…

‘I’ve never been so busy,’ I told my friends.

In Fe­bru­ary 2009, I had my

I got a real buzz from see­ing my­self on screen!

daugh­ter Kayla. As a sin­gle mum, I fo­cused all my at­ten­tion on her.

Over the years, work dried up a bit.

But it didn’t stop me en­cour­ag­ing Kayla to reach for the stars.

‘Never give up on your dreams,’ I’d tell her.

I showed Kayla my TV work when she got older.

‘I want to do it, too!’ she said, over time.

So I ar­ranged an agent for her, and she started singing and street danc­ing, even go­ing to cast­ings for TV shows.

I sup­ported her ev­ery step of the way – and my own act­ing bug came back, too.

Last Novem­ber, I saw an ad on Face­book for ex­tras in The Only Way is Es­sex.

‘I love TOWIE!’ I cried to Kayla.

Af­ter ap­ply­ing, and send­ing a head­shot, I got a re­ply the next day.

‘They want me as an ex­tra!’ I told Kayla, beam­ing.

She was thrilled for me.

That week, I left her with fam­ily, and trav­elled to Cam­bridgeshire for film­ing.

They were shoot­ing the Christ­mas spe­cial in a cas­tle.

To re­ally look the part, I’d al­ready got my hair and nails done. And I’m so glad I did.

The TOWIE cast were just so glam­orous!

We were there to film an ice-queen ball, so I donned a sil­ver dress and stuck di­a­monds to my face.

The make-up team even gave me glit­tery lips!

I felt ev­ery bit as snazzy as the TOWIE lot.

Ex­cept I was so ner­vous, I drank a bit too much bub­bly dur­ing the 10 hours film­ing.

Still, you couldn’t tell when it aired on 21 De­cem­ber.

Watch­ing it with Kayla got me in the fes­tive spirit.

‘There you are, Mummy!’ she grinned, point­ing me out in the back­ground.

Now, I’ve been on TOWIE 13 times, and had self­ies with most of the cast.

My dream is that one day peo­ple will want self­ies with me!

I’ve been in­vited to ap­pear in this year’s TOWIE Christ­mas spe­cial, too.

But I can’t give too much away – it’s top se­cret.

I can tell you one thing for sure, though…

It’ll be glam, tanned and fab­u­lous – of course! Merry Es­sex-mas ev­ery­one!

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